25 Years of Pulp Fiction

October 14th was the date Pulp Fiction was released.


The Comedy Police and a Truly Epic Fail

Rotten Tomatoes have been trying all year to eliminate “audience” ratings. It really started when there were large numbers of audience ratings for Captain Marvel that found that movie less than thrilling. They haven’t let up. Oh, they like audience ratings, if you buy movie tickets through them, otherwise you’re a bot from Russia, or something.

The latest show to earn the wrath of Rotten Tomatoes, and the ire of all people “woke,” is Dave Chappelle’s Sticks and Stones. I haven’t seen it, but I may have to try. (I won’t subscribe to Netflix, but friends are subscribed.)

Details, or at least a description of what caused the Kerfuffle is at ‘Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones’ On Netflix Doubles Down On His Critics. (Hat tip to Crowder.)

The Mark of Zorro (1940)

Tyrone Power vs Basil Rathbone. (Rathbone made an excellent bad guy!) This might be the best piece of swordsmanship ever put on film. It is certainly my favorite. The 1940 film The Mark of Zorro is definitely one of my favorite, classic movies. (When I was growing up, it played every year on WGN’s Family Classics.)

Basil Rathbone versus Errol Flynn in the 1938 production of The Adventures of Robin Hood comes close, but they had a much larger budget, and the fight is more about camera angles, and cinematic tricks, than about the fight itself. Also, that film was shot in Technicolor, and those cameras were large and unwieldy, and so they didn’t move too often. While 35mm cameras are not exactly small, compared to Technicolor, they are much easier to move around. I think it shows up in the story telling.

A movie from 1940 qualifies as Classic Cinema.

Ghostbusters (1984)

Classic Cinema? Please tell me it isn’t old enough to be “classic.” Original ‘Ghostbusters’ Returning to Theaters for 35th Anniversary.

the 1984 comedy “Ghostbusters” is returning to theaters in honor of its 35th anniversary

The “disaster of Biblical proportions” scene in the Mayor’s office is after the break. I’m not sure if that counts as a spoiler or not.

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Born To Be Wild

Peter Fonda died this past week at the age of 79. I think most people know him because of Easy Rider, but I will always think of him as Ulee Jackson in the movie Ulee’s Gold.

This is “Born to Be Wild” by Steppenwolf from their debut album Steppenwolf, which was released in 1968. (It was also released as a single.) It is set against the opening (at least in part) of Easy Rider. (YouTube. Browser privacy settings. “Unavailable.” Use link.)

After the break is the trailer for Ulee’s Gold. It is worth a look if you haven’t seen it. (Fonda did win “Best Actor” at the Golden Globes.)

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Hacking In Movies and TV – Mostly Insanely Portrayed

Because Math and computers are hard, and writers are too cool to worry about those details anyway. 20 times Hollywood got hacking right (and oh so wrong).

Hacking, as with other real-world activities, like police work, journalism and being human, is something that Hollywood sometimes depicts accurately, and sometimes depicts with a lazy flurry of “rapid-fire typing.”

James Bond (and other big-ticket Hollywood films) gets hacking mostly wrong. As does NCIS, with a bunch of writers who apparently don’t know enough about computers to be able to use one to write their scripts. Mr Robot, of course, gets things right. Hak5 even mentioned that in one episode they apparently lifted some explanation for something word-for-word from a Hak5 page in the Wiki, and they got called out by name. Sort of. (The Hak5 Rubber Ducky.)

And this doesn’t even cover how people in tech are usually portrayed. (Nerds, in a nutshell.) NCIS gets points in my book for that. Neither Abby S. or McGee were completely nerdy. Though NCIS New Orleans fell back on that a bit. (Can you spell stereotype?)

There are even a few movies which are mentioned that I haven’t seen; I might look into them now. And there are also one or two, like Wargames, that I haven’t seen in a very long time, that might be worth reviewing.

Anyway if you have any interest in tech, and/or any interest in Movies and TV, you might get a kick out of the slideshow at the first link at the top.

Like a Train-wreck. I want to Look Away…

But I can’t. UFO. The 1970 TV series. It probably hit the US in 1971 or 1972 at the latest. (By 1975 they were making Space 1999, which was a spin-off.) I remember watching this, when it first launched. I thought it was great, but then I was 10 or 11 years old.

What follows is the pilot, “Identified.” They all seem to be there, though I have not watched them all. (There are limits! It truly is bad, even compared to the original Star Trek series.) The effects are cheesy, the costumes and dialog are ridiculous, even by the standards of 1970, though I do like the purple hair on the Moon Base Alpha crew. And EVERYBODY smokes. On planes. In offices. Wherever. Which was true up to about 1990 or so anyway. So since the series is set in 1980, this is probably Truth in Television.